Kosovo has been under various forms of international administration since 1999. Although the political dimension of this international experience has been widely studied by scholars — especially those associated with the critical theory of liberal peacebuilding — the economic dimension of international rule has received less attention. This article explores the economic dimension by linking insights from rentier theory with critical approaches to liberal peacebuilding and statebuilding. The postulate informing this article is that the sources of a state's income have an impact on its institutional development. The article discusses liberal peacebuilding through the lens of rentier theory, it analyses the economic management in the early years of the international administration of Kosovo, and describes and explores some of the unintended consequences of this massive international presence in Kosovo for the local economy.